“Declan Burke is his own genre. The Lammisters dazzles, beguiles and transcends. Virtuoso from start to finish.” – Eoin McNamee “This bourbon-smooth riot of jazz-age excess, high satire and Wodehouse flamboyance is a pitch-perfect bullseye of comic brilliance.” – Irish Independent Books of the Year 2019 “This rapid-fire novel deserves a place on any bookshelf that grants asylum to PG Wodehouse, Flann O’Brien or Kyril Bonfiglioli.” – Eoin Colfer, Guardian Best Books of the Year 2019 “The funniest book of the year.” – Sunday Independent “Declan Burke is one funny bastard. The Lammisters ... conducts a forensic analysis on the anatomy of a story.” – Liz Nugent “Burke’s exuberant prose takes centre stage … He plays with language like a jazz soloist stretching the boundaries of musical theory.” – Totally Dublin “A mega-meta smorgasbord of inventive language ... linguistic verve not just on every page but every line.Irish Times “Above all, The Lammisters gives the impression of a writer enjoying himself. And so, dear reader, should you.” – Sunday Times “A triumph of absurdity, which burlesques the literary canon from Shakespeare, Pope and Austen to Flann O’Brien … The Lammisters is very clever indeed.” – The Guardian

Friday, November 29, 2013

Review: THE OUTSIDER by Arlene Hunt

The latest crime fiction column in the Irish Times features new offerings from Ian Rankin, Arlene Hunt, Donna Leon, Paul Johnston and Lee Child. The Arlene Hunt review runs like this:
Arlene Hunt is best known for her Dublin-set ‘QuicK Investigations’ novels, which feature the private eye duo John Quigley and Sarah Kenny, although her most recent offering, the standalone The Chosen (2011), was set in a remote rural setting in the US. In The Outsider (Portnoy Publishing, €11.50), Hunt sets her story in another rural setting, that of County Wicklow, with the story centring on the twins Emma and Anthony Byrne. A teenager who ‘may or may not be on the autism spectrum’, Emma develops a rare ability to rehabilitate physically and psychologically brutalised horses; why would anyone want to harm such a gentle soul? The backdrop of the Wicklow countryside suggests that The Outsider belongs to the ‘cosy’ or ‘malice domestic’ tradition, but while the style and setting are far removed from the hardboiled conventions, Hunt excels at excavating the petty passions of village life that, unchecked, lead here to anger, obsession and murderous rage. Moreover, The Outsider is not the straightforward narrative of taboos broached and justice served we expect from ‘cosy’ novels. In creating a community of apparently ordinary people capable of extraordinary cruelty, Hunt deftly blurs the lines between justice and revenge and propels her tale into the realms of true tragedy. – Declan Burke
  For the rest of the column, clickety-click here

No comments: